是否為會員

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不要被貪愛金錢所耗損

NOT BECOMING CONSUMED WITH THE LOVE OF MONEY

(2024/04/15)

我人生中一度的主要動力,是積累許多錢財。追求財富成為了我的一種生活方式。然而,這並不是一個新鮮或獨特的現象。數千年來,這一點一直是人們的真實寫照。使徒保羅在給他的門徒提摩太的書信中,提供了以下的智慧言辭:「貪財是萬惡之根。有人貪戀錢財,就被引誘離了真道,用許多愁苦把自己刺透了。」(提摩太前書6章10節)

金錢本身並非邪惡,但對金錢的貪愛,可能會引發多種形式的惡。擁有金錢或渴望賺錢,來滿足我們的生活需要、建立事業、或取得我們想要的東西並無不妥。然而,當金錢成為我們的目標和我們敬拜的神時,我們就有很大的問題了。

多年前,有一個流行的汽車貼紙上寫著:「死時擁有最多玩具的是贏家」。這句機巧的話,得到那些不惜一切代價,迷戀於擁有多了還要更多之人們的認同。但他們可能從未認真考慮過,這樣的代價可能有多高。

以色列的所羅門王,一位極其成功的人物,以深刻的方式探討了這個主題。根據他的經驗觀察到「後來,我察看我手所經營的一切事和我勞碌所成的功。誰知都是虛空,都是捕風;在日光之下毫無益處。」(傳道書2章11節) 他從個人經驗中分享,他意識到,對金錢的貪愛就像追逐風一樣。這是無用的行為。

對金錢的貪愛。這是許多種惡的根源。如果我們熱愛金錢,就無法去愛上帝 - 我們的天父。其實,我們並不需要擁有大量的金錢,才會愛上它。我們可能身無分文,卻仍然深深愛慕金錢及其所能購買的東西。我們很容易陷入一個邪惡的陷阱,認為金錢會帶給我們幸福和滿足感。我個人親身觀察到,金錢會嚴重分散我們的注意力,將我們帶離生命中真正重要的事情。

專注於錯誤的事物。我見過許多成功的人,對自己的事業著迷,以至於忽略了家庭、朋友和信仰。即使是聲稱信奉耶穌基督的基督徒,也可能變得狂熱地追求金錢,而忽略了生命中最重要的事情。我們可能會被金錢的吸引力所迷惑,我們誤信它能對我們的生命,產生正面的影響。有時,上帝會允許我們經歷困難,包括疾病、失業、離婚,或許多其他苦難,來使我們相信,金錢實際上,並不是我們最深層需求與渴望,所有的答案。

正確的寶庫。耶穌明確告訴他的跟隨者:「不要為自己積儹財寶在地上;地上有蟲子咬,能銹壞,也有賊挖窟窿來偷。只要積儹財寶在天上;天上沒有蟲子咬,不能銹壞,也沒有賊挖窟窿來偷。因為你的財寶在那裡,你的心也在那裡。」(馬太福音6章19-21節)

每個人都必須回答的重要問題是:你的心在哪裡?是在金錢和它在地上所能買到的東西中嗎,還是在你與天父的關係中呢?聖經教導我們「你要盡心、盡性、盡力愛耶和華你的神。」(申命記6章5節),並將我們的財寶存在天上。如果我們這樣做,就不會有遺憾了。

© 2024. Robert J. Tamasy 是企業巔峰: 給今日職場從箴言而來永恆的智慧 一書的作者。也與導師之心的作者David A. Stoddard 合著Tufting Legacies。編輯多本著作包括Mike Landry. Bob的書:透過苦難成長。Mike Landry. Bob的網站為www.bobtamasy-readywriterink.com

挑戰思考
在接下來的一週裡,試著對金錢和物質在你生命中的重要性,進行個人評估。你是否將自己視為所擁有一切的主人,還是將自己視為上帝所委託資源的管家呢?思考這兩種觀點之間的不同之處。找一個你認識並關心你的人,談談你們對金錢的態度,以及你是否相信上帝可能希望你,進行一些「態度的調整」。

備註:如果你有聖經,想閱讀更多相關的內容,請參考以下的經文:
傳道書2章4-11節
2:4我為自己動大工程,建造房屋,栽種葡萄園,
2:5修造園囿,在其中栽種各樣果木樹;
2:6挖造水池,用以澆灌嫩小的樹木。
2:7我買了僕婢,也有生在家中的僕婢;又有許多牛群羊群,勝過以前在耶路撒冷眾人所有的。
2:8我又為自己積蓄金銀和君王的財寶,並各省的財寶;又得唱歌的男女和世人所喜愛的物,並許多的妃嬪。
2:9這樣,我就日見昌盛,勝過以前在耶路撒冷的眾人。我的智慧仍然存留。
2:10凡我眼所求的,我沒有留下不給他的;我心所樂的,我沒有禁止不享受的;因我的心為我一切所勞碌的快樂,這就是我從勞碌中所得的分。
2:11後來,我察看我手所經營的一切事和我勞碌所成的功。誰知都是虛空,都是捕風;在日光之下毫無益處。
馬太福音6章24節
6:24「一個人不能事奉兩個主;不是惡這個,愛那個,就是重這個,輕那個。你們不能又事奉神,又事奉瑪門(瑪門:財利的意思)。」
提摩太後書3章1-4節
3:1你該知道,末世必有危險的日子來到。
3:2因為那時人要專顧自己、貪愛錢財、自誇、狂傲、謗讟、違背父母、忘恩負義、心不聖潔、
3:3無親情、不解怨、好說讒言、不能自約、性情兇暴、不愛良善、
3:4賣主賣友、任意妄為、自高自大、愛宴樂、不愛神,
雅各書4章13-17節
4:13嗐!你們有話說:「今天明天我們要往某城裡去,在那裡住一年,作買賣得利。」
4:14其實明天如何,你們還不知道。你們的生命是什麼呢?你們原來是一片雲霧,出現少時就不見了。
4:15你們只當說:「主若願意,我們就可以活著,也可以做這事,或做那事。」
4:16現今你們竟以張狂誇口;凡這樣誇口都是惡的。
4:17人若知道行善,卻不去行,這就是他的罪了。

反省與問題討論
第一、金錢對你有多重要?在回答之前花點時間考慮一下。現在解釋一下為什麼你會這樣回答。
第二、不間斷地追求金錢和物質事物,可能存在哪些潛在問題?你認為貪愛錢財為何如此普遍,特別是在商業和專業領域中呢?
第三、追求金錢在我們生命中,會以何種方式帶來邪惡呢?你認為我們所擁有的-在物質財富方面-為什麼會影響我們對自己的看法,以及他人對我們的看法呢?
第四、如果你-或你所熟悉並關心的人,明顯的被金錢吞噬或沉迷於追求財富與物質,可以採取哪些步驟來克服這個問題?把財寶存在天上,而不是在地上,這意味著什麼呢?

 

MONDAY MANNA
April 15, 2024

NOT BECOMING CONSUMED WITH THE LOVE OF MONEY
By Jim Langley

At one time in my life, I was greatly motivated by how much money I could accumulate. Pursuing wealth became a way of life. This is hardly a new or unique development, however. It has been true of people for thousands of years. Writing to his protégé Timothy, the Apostle Paul offered these words of wisdom: “The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs” (1 Timothy 6:10).

Money is not inherently evil, but the love of money can cause evil in many forms. There is nothing wrong with having money or desiring to earn it to meet our physical needs, build a business, or acquire things we want. However, when it becomes both our goal and our god, we have a huge problem.

Years ago, there was a popular car bumper sticker that proclaimed, “HE WHO DIES WITH THE MOST TOYS WINS. That clever saying found agreement from people enamored with having more and more, whatever the cost. But they probably never seriously considered how great that cost might be.

King Solomon of Israel, an extremely successful individual, addressed this subject in a profound way. From experience he observed, “Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 2:11). He shared from his personal experience as one who came to an awareness that the love of money is the equivalent of chasing the wind. It is an exercise in futility.

The Love of Money: a root of many kinds of evil. If we are in love with money, we cannot be in love with God, our Heavenly Father. And we do not need to possess lots of money to love it! We can be penniless and still have a deep affection for money and what it can buy for us. We can easily fall into the evil trap of rationalizing that money will bring us happiness and contentment. I have personally observed how money can create major distractions and steer us away from what really matters in life.

Focused on the Wrong Things: I have seen many successful people obsessed by their careers to the point of neglecting family, friends, and their faith. Even professing followers of Jesus Christ can become fanatically focused with making money, losing sight of what is most important in life. We can become mesmerized by money’s magnetic power and how we believe it can positively affect our lives. Sometimes God will allow us to experience hardships, including illness, loss of jobs, divorce, or many other calamities. to convince us money in fact is not the answer to our deepest needs and desires.

The Right Storehouse: Jesus laid it on the line when He warned His followers, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:19-21).

There is an important question we each must answer: Where is your heart? Is it found in money and the things it can buy here on earth, or is it in your relationship with your Heavenly Father? The Bible instructs us to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your mind, with all your soul and with all your strength” (Deuteronomy 6:5) and store our treasures in Heaven. If we do that, we will have no regrets.

© 2024, all rights reserved. Jim Langley has been writing for more than 30 years while working as a life and health insurance agent. In recent years, his passion has turned to writing about his relationship with God. His goal is to encourage others to draw near to Him as well. A long-time member of CBMC, he started writing “Fourth Quarter Strategies” in 2014.

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Reflection/Discussion Questions

 
1.How important is money to you? Take a moment to consider before you answer. Now explain why you answered as you did.


2.What are some of the potential problems with an unrelenting pursuit of money and material things? Why do you think the “love of money” is so prevalent, especially in the business and professional world?


3.In what ways does the pursuit of money bring about evil in our lives? Why do you think what we possess – in terms of material wealth – can have such influence in how we think about ourselves and how others perceive us?


4.If you – or someone you know well and care about – is clearly consumed with the love and pursuit of money or the things it can buy, what steps can be taken to overcome this problem? What does it mean to store up our treasures in Heaven, rather than on earth?



NOTE: For more about what the Bible says, consider the following passages:
Ecclesiastes 2:4-11; Matthew 6:24; 2 Timothy 3:1-4; James 4:13-17

 

Challenge for This Week


During the coming week, try to do a personal assessment of the importance money and material things have in your life. Do you view yourself as the owner of everything you possess, or as a steward of resources God has entrusted to you? Consider how those two perspectives are different.
        Find someone you know who cares about you and talk about your respective attitudes toward money – and whether you believe the Lord might want you to make some “attitude adjustments.”